GLOBAL - Global equity markets rebounded in December, with 19 of the 21 emerging markets and 22 of the 25 developed markets posting gains during the month, latest Standard & Poor's (S&P) data reveals.
Howard Silverblatt, senior index analyst at Standard & Poor's, said: "A glimmer of hope - that is how we can define December. As central banks race to reduce rates, add liquidity and shore up their local economy, markets remain cautiously optimistic as we move into 2009.
"However, as evident by the huge stock piles of cash still on the side lines, many world markets are taking a wait-and-see approach. The result is a continuance of extreme market volatility."
Among the more notable emerging market decliners in 2008 were the BRIC countries: Brazil, Russia, India and China. Morocco was the best performer among emerging market countries declining 15.85%.
The second best performer was Israel, nearly twenty percentage points away, with a loss of 34.68%.
As for the developed markets, Ireland was the major decline in 2008, followed by Greece and Norway.
Japan posted the second best return during the year (-29.22%), with Switzerland close behind at -30.60%. The United States declined 38.68% during the year placing it as the third "best" performer among developed markets and fifth best among all global equity markets.
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